Day 0. Hong Kong – Narkanda

Posted: June 26, 2018 in Uncategorized

Well. It wasn’t how I planned, but I’m here in one piece, as is the bike. No ordered taxi but an oversized motor rickshaw to my Dehli hotel at 1am. A 12 hour drive through the Himalayan traffic jam to the ski station (so the sign says) of Narkanda. The cycling can begin.

The plane was 2 hours late and my taxi driver didn’t show up. On ringing the hotel, they said they’d send him. I rang again half an hour later and they said I should find my own taxi.

I passed trough the crowds of taxi drivers offering exhorbitant rates, people pulling my packed trolley left and right, and ended up with my prepaid taxi slip being led to an oversized motor rickshaw. Somehow the bike fit, and we drove off into the Delhi night smog.

The driver didn’t know where the hotel was, so we stopped at the police to ask, called out to a homeless guy curled up in front of a shop window, and asked some dudes just hanging out, with their bellies exposed to the elements, China style.

I got to the hotel at 2am and then proceeded to put my bike together.

It all worked, and I smiled. I was one step closer to starting!

It was scorching outside as my taxi took me and bike through the heat along the dead straight freeway, lined from beginning to end with ‘dhabas’ – places to stop for food.

Finally the road started winding into the hills – and the traffic started banking up. The mountains are beautiful – not high yet, but very very steep. The road curls along their side with steep drops above and below. Villages consist of buildings on top of each other marching down the slopes.

The plan was to reach Shimla by 3. We were there as the sun was setting. My hotel and starting point of the bike trip was 60km past Shimla. We got there at 21:30. I’m knackered, and feel bad for my poor driver who must be even more tired. He had a 12 hour working day. I gave him a nice tip.

Comments
  1. Frans Driedonks says:

    Nice bike you get there. It comes very close to mine, a Koga World Traveller KS-TR28. I wonder if it will sustain in the heavy conditions of northern India. Succes with your trip. I will follow you on the internet

  2. Eliza Waters says:

    Welcome to India! ๐Ÿ˜€

  3. Judith says:

    Heb je iets gemerkt van watertekort in Shimla? Daar lezen wij hier over in de krant…

  4. Ah the haggling of Indian drivers. You could for your trips check out Uber or for that matter a local taxi aggregator Ola.

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